Mississippi State defensive back Brandon Bryant is one of a few players that could potentially be selected in this year’s NFL supplemental draft. A safety at Mississippi State, Bryant is a hard hitter who regularly flies up and makes tackles. After being turned away from the team this spring due to ineligibility, Bryant decided to head towards the pros via the Supplemental Draft.
The young safety also has some legal trouble in his past with a DUI arrest on his record dating back to 2017. However, apart from that, Bryant has a clean record.
Bryant is a physical specimen who has all of the tools to succeed at the next level, but can he put it all together? With solid size, (coming in over 200 pounds) excellent speed, and overall athletic ability Bryant has what it takes to make it onto the NFL field.
Play On The Field
All of those tools translated into very consistent play over the past few seasons from Bryant. In his career at Mississippi State, he made over 150 tackles and covered very well in short field situations.
An issue with Bryant’s game is his ability to cover the wide side of the field. His tendency to come flying up to the football can at times leave him vulnerable to the deep ball and getting beat over the top.
However, with all of those tools, one question remains, where are all the big plays? In the past three seasons, Bryant has intercepted just one pass. How can a player who spent so much time in a defensive backfield make such an insignificant impact in the passing game? To go along with that lone interception, he has recorded just seven passes defended.
With LaMarcus Joyner and John Johnson III holding down the safety position for the Rams you may wonder why the team would look Bryant’s way. However, the reasoning is not that hard to understand. The team lost talented and consistent backup safety Cody Davis in free agency this offseason. With Davis now in Jacksonville, LA’s safety depth chart holds a lot of question marks behind the two starters. Another question the Rams may have is their ability to secure Joyner long-term. The team was unable to get a deal done with the talented young safety this past offseason and were forced to use the franchise tag, a move that may be worrying some Rams fans.
So, if the Rams are unwilling to pay Joyner long-term they may think they have a formidable replacement in Bryant. However, Bryant seems to lack the playmaking potential that Joyner possesses.
Supplemental Draft Logistics
If the Rams elect to take a player Wednesday, they will lose a pick in the corresponding round of next year’s draft. Rams fans will likely remember this from the team’s pick of Isaiah Battle a few years ago. The team drafted Battle in the fifth round of the 2015 Supplemental Draft and lost their fifth-round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.
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If the Rams were to take a chance on Bryant Wednesday, I would expect them to wait until at least the sixth round. Going much earlier than that would be surprising as the Rams do not have very many late round picks next season. However, they do likely have two high-round compensatory picks headed their way next season. So, do not be surprised if LA pulls the trigger on Bryant Wednesday night.